Arsene Wenger admitted there was a touch of fortune about Arsenal’s nervy progress to the Champions League group stage.
Arsenal beat Besiktas 1-0 but before Alexis Sanchez’s winning goal, Jack Wilshere brought down Ramon Motta from behind in the penalty area.
Wilshere later admitted he did make contact with Motta and Wenger conceded the decision had gone their way.
“I haven’t seen it,” Wenger said afterwards, “maybe we were lucky on one occasion, with Jacky, but I think he went for the ball.”
Wenger did not feel quite as blessed with all of Pedro Proenca’s decisions, though, as he protested against the two yellow cards given to right-back Mathieu Debuchy.
“We finished the two games with 10 men,” Wenger said, reflecting on the first leg when Aaron Ramsey was dismissed. “I feel the first sending off was very harsh, and tonight's as well. Debuchy went for the ball, played the ball. There's no intention there to make a bad foul or stop the counter. And he won the ball.”
Wenger revealed that Olivier Giroud had surgery on his broken tibia, ruling him out for three to four months, but he was confident in Alexis Sanchez’s ability to play there for the foreseeable future.
“He can play his whole life at centre-forward,” Wenger said. “I bought him to play as a striker, not to play only on the flanks.”